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31 Ways To Take Control Of High Cholesterol
Best Foods For Your Cholesterol
When you’re trying to lower cholesterol, beans are among the best foods you can eat. They’re very high in soluble fiber, which “traps” cholesterol in the intestine and helps keep it out of the bloodstream. All beans are high in fiber, but some varieties really stand out. Black beans, for example, have 7 1/2 grams of fiber in a 1/2-cup serving. Lima and kidney beans have about 6 1/2 grams, and black-eyed peas contain about 5 1/2 grams. The drawback to beans, of course, is that they take forever to cook. Make life easy and use canned beans. They’re just as good at lowering cholesterol as the dried kind.
How Doctors Help With Cholesterol Treatment
Ideally, your levels of HDL “good” cholesterol should be above 40 (and better, above 60), and your levels of LDL “bad” cholesterol below 100. The natural LDL levels of primates is 70, says Capuzzi, so human levels should naturally be about the same. Your total cholesterol, which is the sum of HDL, LDL, and other blood fats, should be below 200.
If your numbers aren’t as good as possible, your doctor may advise you to take cholesterol-lowering drugs. They are very effective but are usually recommended only when lifestyle changes aren’t effective. Your doctor will look at more than just cholesterol numbers when considering drugs. Other risk factors for heart disease, such as smoking or a family history of heart problems, will also determine whether or not you need medication.
Panel Of Advisors
Betzy Bancroftis a professional memeber of the American Herbalists Guild and codirector and faculty member of the Vermont Center for Integrative Herbalism in Montpellier.
David M. Capuzzi, MD, PhD,is a professor of medicine and biochemistry at Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia and director of the cardiovascular disease prevention program at the Myrna Brind Center of Integrative Medicine at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia.
Marisa Moore, RD,is a registered and licensed dietitian in Atlanta, Georgia, and a national spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.
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